WANTED: a premier for the climate emergency
BC NDP frontrunner David Eby promises he will be Horgan 2.0
It’s July 2022 and the climate emergency is killing thousands of people, melting airport runways and burning down homes across Europe.
At his campaign launch in Kitsilano, David Eby is talking instead about his idyllic childhood in the “picture perfect suburbs” of southern Ontario in the 1980s.
“We have the resources in B.C. to deliver the quality of life I had as a child,” Eby promises. “Every child deserves the opportunity, safety and security I had.”
It’s a nice thought. But that world no longer exists.
Life in B.C. is getting shorter
Thousands of our friends and neighbours are dead from poisoned drugs, a neverending pandemic and last year’s heat wave, floods and fires.
The oil and gas industry, together with police and Crown prosecutors, is punching two new pipelines through Indigenous lands, with more fracking and pipelines planned.
Children today face decades of war, disease, mass migration and food shortages as the climate unravels, driven by aggressive fossil fuel expansion in places like B.C.
Those realities were absent from Eby’s 30-minute speech, which focused instead on nostalgia – and continuity with retiring premier John Horgan.
“I think what British Columbians are looking for is that consistency and that stability, and continuing in the direction that we were headed,” Eby told the Globe and Mail.
“Really I don’t see any radical shifts happening here for government,” Eby told the Daily Hive. “People are happy with our government.”
Party closes ranks around Eby
48 out of 57 NDP MLAs have endorsed Eby’s campaign, hoping their overwhelming support for the status quo will discourage other candidates from running.
That would prevent any debate within the party, and stop members from voting for a leader willing to treat the climate emergency with the urgency it demands.
The BC NDP membership has dwindled to just 11,000 thanks to Horgan’s support for the Site C dam, old-growth clearcuts and the invasion of Wet’suwet’en territory.
A candidate willing to acknowledge reality – and take the party in a different direction from Horgan – could bring in thousands of new members.
In fact, the party rules allow members as young as 12 to join and vote. If youth saw a vision worth fighting for, they could play a major role in picking the next premier.
Who will step up?
The winner of this leadership race will govern for two years before the next election. Those years could very well determine the future of the province.
Who has the vision and the bravery to challenge B.C.’s political establishment?
No individual can stand alone against the power of international fracking companies or militarized police. But with a grassroots movement behind them, the next premier could.
Who would you like to see lead B.C. into the climate emergency? Is it Eby, or someone else? Leave your suggestions in the comment section, or post them on social media.
WTAHeck? If the NDP don’t put forward a candidate in this race that will stop fracking and fossil fuel proliferation those members should resign. I cannot believe this is happening!
I’ve pretty much given up on the NDP. Once in power, they soon started acting just like the BC Liberals. It’s like there’s some drug in the air at the Leg that converts them. Realistically I think our only hope is the Greens.
Railways make public movement, from small communities to large service-rich cities, cheap and reliable all over Europe and Japan and Russia. BC needs rail service. We could develop small communities, where life is less costly, take the pressure off big cities, and accommodate immigrants who are the backbone of Canada’s population growth, increasing the tax base. Every town should have a railway station, and daily service. This single project would change BC for the better for everyone. Jobs. Optimism. Cultural growth.
This website ires me. I was born in Alert Bay surrounding by nature. It’s important part of my life and I want the most responsible person to be elected to lead BC in the right direction and that’s David Eby.. Over the last decade, he has exhibits a truthfulness in government that is simply lacking in your candidate and in other political parties. Your website is created to influence, sadly, your truth is a symptom of our times.
I did hear one encouraging note in David Eby’s comments October 21, the promise to end fossil fuel subsidies and direct the money to clean energy. That is a welcome departure from his announcement in July. If he delivers on that this year, I will have some hope for the future.
I want to see Anjali and Suzanne Simard in Eby’s cabinet, Suzanne as Minster of Forests. Anjali in the post of her choice.
The only better alternative I can think of is Anjali as Premier.